The two-state solution may be the only workable solution to the conflict between Israel and Palestine, but that solution, now, is being hampered by the actions of Israel. It’s only a matter of time until this powder keg explodes into a full-blown war the drags other Middle East nations and the West into the fray.
Yesterday, Secretary of State John Kerry spoke about the Israeli/Palestinian issue for 70 minutes. The report he gave was not a rambling rant of a man who doesn’t know what he’s talking about, but of a man of intellect and vast knowledge of the subject matter. Those listening, or pretending to listen, seemed to only take away from the speech what they came with in the first place.
Before Kerry’s speech began President Elect Donald Trump had already condemned his words. Going to his favorite megaphone, Twitter, Trump called Kerry’s comments disrespectful.
“We cannot continue to let Israel be treated with such total disdain and disrespect,” Trump tweeted.
Arizona Senator John McCain at least waited until after the speech to call Kerry’s speech a “pointless tirade.” Apparently, McCain didn’t listen either.
Kerry offered up a history lesson regarding past agreements, violence, the loss of life and uneasy living on both sides. His speech was fair. Kerry placed blame with both sides. He spoke about the two-state solution, which he concluded was the only answer for long term stability in the region. Kerry said, however, Israel’s solution seemed to be a state of perpetual Palestinian occupation.
Referring to the UN resolution Kerry said, “We did not take this decision lightly,” regarding the vote in the United Nations Security Council that allowed condemnation of Israel for its continued expansion of settlements. The “Israelis are fully justified in decrying attempts to de-legitimize their state and question the right of a Jewish state to exist. But this vote was not about that,” he said, “It was about actions that Israelis and Palestinians are taking that are increasingly rendering a two-state solution impossible.”
It seems Israel, sensing the upper hand, has acted more like a school-yard bully than someone seeking peace. The day after their condemnation from the UN they continued to grant hundreds of permits to build around East Jerusalem and the West Bank. It seems their plan is to push the Palestinians until they have nowhere else to go. When you corner an animal your force them to fight for their lives.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu dismissed Kerry’s speech as quickly as he did the UN resolution. He seems intent on pushing his settlement agenda forward and looks to the new US administration to back him, and the Trump Administration has indicated they will do just that.
Trump used his campaign to put fear of Muslims into American hearts and minds, and he will continue to do so until he has his mandate for war, a war he seeks, not necessarily out of hate for the Islamic World, but for the spoils of war and all the money that can be made from war.
The lives of young men and women who will lay down their lives for Trump’s war, just as they did for George W. Bush’s wars, means little to him. Trump’s desire to rid the world of Muslims, is not unlike that of Adolph Hitler’s desire to rid the world of the Jews. Yes, we’re talking genocide, and why? Because they don’t think like us, look like us, belief like us or maybe because of 9/11?
Trump has angered China, cuddled up to Russia and spoke about reneging on the nuclear deal with Iran. Now he’s getting chummy with Netanyahu and his words serve to encourage Israel to stay the course, a course that will take America, France, Germany, Britain Russia and others into another great war, a world war like we have feared but hope would never happen.
It would not have mattered what Kerry had to say yesterday, the path is already being cleared for war. Trump’s cabinet is full of generals, and generals like war, they love war, they live for war. Say goodbye to the world we’ve known, as bad as it has been at times, it’s only going to get worse.
Kerry summed up our friendship with Israel with these words: “Some seem to believe that the U.S. friendship means the U.S. must accept any policy, regardless of our own interests, our own positions, our own words, our own principles — even after urging again and again that the policy must change,” he said. “Friends need to tell each other the hard truths, and friendships require mutual respect.”
Respect, that will be missed. President Obama has showed the world respect, even as he received little himself. For the last eight years, he has dealt with an obstructionist Congress, an economic crisis, humors of wars and many social issues, all with respect and dignity. We will see none of that from the incoming president. No indeed, in Obama’s place comes a different kind of man, a far more dangerous kind of man by the name of Donald Trump.